The Development of the Criminal Law. Parliamentary Review of Bill C The Response of the Government. Bill C Royal Assent 27 October Bill C Royal Assent and in force 28 December Bill C Royal Assent 11 March Prostitution is a controversial subject, involving complex and contradictory interests, values and issues.
Moreover, how far should the state go in exercising its powers to clst the practice of prostitution, and is prostitution a problem in itself, or merely part of larger postitution
Prostitution is at once a feminist and civil libertarian issue, and a law and order issue. It otttawa questions of morality and constitutional rights and freedoms.
One of the few areas of consensual sexual activity that is still subject to legal control and the imposition of criminal sanctions, prostitution continues to engender vigorous debate. The actual act of exchanging sexual gratification for a consideration between adults has never been criminally illegal in Canada. The criminal law did, and does, however, deal with activities related to prostitution which are deemed a threat to public order or offensive to public decency.
Under it, however, women, and only women, could be dealt with essentially on the basis of status and not for any overt act, the usual basis of criminal liability. Section It did not compel a suspect to give an of his or her actions, and appeared to apply to both men and women. According to critics at both ends of the spectrum, however, section In this case, a plainclothes police officer had permitted the appellant to enter his car, whereupon the appellant proceeded to identify herself as a prostitute and to discuss terms for her services.
According to many critics, the Hutt decision left the police powerless to deal prostitution ottawa cost burgeoning street prostitution. So long as the requisite persistence was avoided, prostitutes could congregate and ply their trade without fear of interference. As well, section The B. Dudak3 C. On the other hand, the Ontario Court of Appeal held in R.
DiPaola4 C. The new provision also proved to be contentious, but its constitutionality was ultimately upheld by the Supreme Court of Canada prostitution ottawa cost Less controversial have been other provisions of the Criminal Code dealing with prostitution. The courts have held that, to come within that definition, a place must be resorted to for prostitution on a habitual and regular basis R. Thus, a conviction for keeping a common bawdy house was secured against a woman who used her own apartment, alone but on a regular basis, for purposes of prostitution R.
Worthington22 C. Corbeil 1 S. One element of the bawdy-house provisions has been declared inoperative following a Charter challenge. The statutory presumption in section 1 prostitution ottawa cost was that a conviction of keeping a disorderly house amounts to proof of the nature of the premises in subsequent proceedings against other persons accused of being frequenters and inmates. This presumption was held to offend sections 11 d and 7 of the Charter R.
The Quebec Court of Appeal resolved that the presumption conflicted with rules of evidence respecting hearsay, opinion evidence and relevance, and would deprive the accused of a fair trial. Since no evidence was presented to justify the infringement under section 1 of the Charter, the section was declared to be of no force or effect. The majority of judges held that the acts were not indecent since they did not fall below the community standard of tolerance for such activities.
The Court included as relevant the circumstances surrounding the act, the dost of harm prostituyion could result from public exposure, and expert evidence.
Citing the Tremblay decision, a trial judge in Ontario ruled that lap dancing or table dancing was not an indecent performance. This ruling created quite an uproar and even led to the enactment of a Toronto by-law prohibiting close-contact dancing in adult entertainment parlours. This decision prrostitution subsequently overturned by the Court of Appeal of Ontario, which described lap dancing as a form of prostitution R.
Mara27 O. It found that ottwa dancing amounts to an indecent performance, and clearly exceeds what is acceptable for the proper functioning of Canadian society.
On appeal of this decision to the Supreme Court of Canada, it was confirmed in June that sexual contact between strippers and patrons in public constitutes a form ottaws prostitution that violates community standards. Writing for the Court, Mr. Maraunreported, 26 June A of related issues remain unresolved.
Beyond attempting to regulate solicitation and prostittution place where prostitution takes place, the Criminal Code also attempts to throw a net ottxwa a broad variety of related activities. Section 1 details a of offences relating to pimping, procuring, and living on the avails of prostitution, while section 4 prohibits the purchase of sexual services of a minor. The majority in Downey accepted the fact that prostitution ottawa cost accused might be convicted despite the existence of a reasonable doubt as to his or her guilt.
A person may share accommodation with a prostitute without necessarily living on the avails of her earnings.
The Court nevertheless ruled that the impugned section constituted a reasonable limit on the presumption of innocence. The legislative objective, to curb the exploitive activity of pimps, was of sufficient importance to warrant overriding the protected right.
The Court also found that section 2 met the proportionality test. The impairment of the Charter right was described as minimal. The accused need only present evidence capable of raising a reasonable doubt. The accused need not testify; the necessary evidence could be led by simply cross-examining Crown witnesses. The focus of what is now section 3 was not only to address the serious social problems flowing from prostitution but also to protect the prostitutes from further abuse since they themselves would not be required to testify.
After the decision by the Supreme Court of Canada proxtitution Huttthere was increasing public pressure to amend section Police and provincial governments wanted to be able to deal with activity that in their opinion blighted residential and commercial areas, and brought with it other criminal activity, including drug trafficking and the exploitation of children. Westendorp32 C.
City of Montreal 2 S. A new strategy to attempt to deal with street solicitation was undertaken in British Columbia in the summer of The provincial Attorney General applied to the B.
The court granted an interim injunction A. Couillard42 C. No trial was held with respect to a permanent injunction because the interim measure was rescinded, on the application of the Attorney General, after ottaea enactment of new legislation in December The application was refused, however, on the basis that the province was trying to control by civil procedure a matter that fell within criminal and, hence, federal jurisdiction.
Beaver67 N. The Fraser Committee.
In Junethe Minister of Justice established a special committee to enquire into the issues of prostitution and pornography. That body, known as the Fraser Committee after its chairman, issued its report in April The report declared that prostitution, in all its forms, was a widespread phenomenon in Canada, particularly in urban centres. It found that, although there was a dearth of empirical information about prostitution, it was likely that economic distress was a ificant factor in compelling many women to take up the practice.
Criminalization would forbid all manner of prostitution and related activities. The Committee rejected this approach, because it would lack public support, would be virtually impossible to enforce, and would apply a narrow moral view by way of criminal sanction. Although sympathetic to the aims of decriminalization, the Committee did not fully support it.
In its view, all of the opportunities for damage, abuse and exploitation would remain. Most ificantly, the recommendations addressed economic and social reforms that might alleviate the causes of prostitution. For example, the Committee recommended that governments in Canada strengthen their moral and financial commitment to the removal of social inequalities between men and women, ensure that there are adequate social programs to assist women and young people in need, and direct more funding to community groups involved in the care and welfare of both practising ohtawa reformed prostitutes.
The Committee, with one member dissenting, decided that it would be wrong to remove all criminal sanctions with respect to prostitution.
Accordingly, it suggested a new offence of interfering or attempting to interfere, on more prostitution ottawa cost one occasion, with pedestrian or vehicular traffic for the purposes of offering to engage in prostitution or of employing the services of a prostitute. The Fraser Committee proposed to proatitution its recommendation for more severe treatment of street soliciting by easing other restrictions on the actual act of prostitution.
It recommended replacing the bawdy house provisions with provisions for criminalizing only the use of premises by more than two prostitutes. The Committee took the view that it is ottaqa to permit acts of prostitution and yet make it illegal to resort prstitution certain places to carry them out. By restricting the operation of prostitution establishments to a maximum of two persons, protsitution would supposedly be avoided, and a prostitute could use his or her own residence.
Such establishments would not have the extensive regulation known in some other jurisdictions, but would merely be d and zoned like other businesses. The Committee also recommended repeal of the procuring offences and cot offence of living on the avails of prostitution. They prostitutioon be replaced by a much more limited section that would deal only with procuring accomplished by the use of force, threats prostitution ottawa cost other coercive or threatening behaviour.
Another new offence would cover inducing a person through threats or coercion to support one financially through prostitution. The rationale was that procuring or living on the avails of prostitution should not be criminal unless it involved improper inducement. Also addressed by the Committee was the problem of child prostitution. The Committee concluded its report with the following observation as to how governments should act:. Prostitution cannot be dealt with on a piecemeal basis, but only by carefully linking the provisions on each aspect of prostitution-related activity.
Reaction to the report of the Fraser Committee oottawa mixed. Many groups, in particular civic officials, were pleased with the recommendations on street solicitation. In contrast, the proposals for regulation of prostitution establishments were not well received, and no provincial attorney general indicated any support for such regulation. The police also objected to the suggested repeal of bawdy house laws.
The legislation replaced section